Next Generation Biopesticides for the control of the most "difficult-to-manage" pests and pathogens in fruits and vegetables

01 March 2024 → 29 February 2028
European funding: framework programme
Research disciplines
  • Natural sciences
    • Animal genetics
Project description

Plant pests and pathogens damage agricultural production and endanger food security. Their control relies heavily on the use of
synthetic insecticides, leading to a negative environmental impact. Developing new methods for pest and pathogen control is
therefore essential to safeguard human health and meet the challenge of increasing crop yields, while reducing the use of chemical
pesticides. The overarching objective of the NextGenBioPest project is to meet this need by delivering novel and improved products,
methods, and practices for the rational control of the most difficult-to-manage arthropod pests and pathogens, with substantially
reduced pesticide use. The project will provide a new toolkit for plant protection in key vegetable and fruit crops including
diagnostics for pest and pathogen identification and incrimination, novel Biological Control Agents and methods to augment their
performance in the field, RNA-based pesticides, Low Risk/Green chemicals, plant resistance inducers and innovative agronomic and
ecological practices. These innovations will be integrated with existing approaches, to achieve effective, environment friendly and
sustainable crop protection. They will be validated in large field studies, with both their efficiency and socioeconomic impact
assessed. Demonstration fields, extensive training and modern targeted communication channels, will enable the appropriate
dissemination and uptake of the outcomes to the stakeholders and end users. Data protection and commercialization strategies will
ensure their exploitation. These goals will be achieved by integrating leading institutional and industrial partners with drivers of pest
control programs. The multidisciplinary and multi-actor team will exploit their diverse expertise, access to extensive preliminary data
and resources, and strong networks, to meet the project objectives and ensure the knowledge and tools generated deliver economic,
ecological and societal impact.

Funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or the European Research Executive Agency (REA). Neither the European Union nor the authority can be held responsible for them.